Depeche Mode's new CD Playing The Angel is now available in stores.
This band is such a major influence in modern electronic music that there is an entire generation of Depeche-Mode-inspired bands in Europe (generally synthpop and darkwave bands), compilation albums, etc.
Depeche Mode were not the first artists to use samplers or synthesizers in their songs, but they are arguably one of the most creative. Classic albums like Some Great Reward, Music for the Masses, and Violator still sound amazing - listen to the combination of unique sounds and powerful songwriting.
Most importantly this week, their new album is released. To be fair, they've had some duds in the past. But Playing The Angel definitely re-establishes them as a major force in the world of electronic music.
Like their other classic albums, this is highly listenable but not pop. The sounds are innovative but accessible. The style is familiar and distinctive, but unique. Distorted analog synths. Samples that you can't recognize. Driving rhythms coupled with deep lyrics - as one critic said a decade ago, they're dancing while the world ends.
If you liked the single Precious, you'll like the album. Even if you didn't like Precious, you may still like the album, which is again different from song to song. So check it out in local stores, or on-line at www.depechemode.com